Register: SEP/25/2017, Submit: SEP/25/2017, Eligibility: Private architecture offices, groups of private architecture offices, private architecture firms, or any other legal entities qualified to provide architectural services; qualified architects, urban designers, hydrotechnical engineers, landscape designers, building engineers, sociologists; from the European Union, of the European Economic Area, and to the Swiss Confederation, Fee: Free, Awards: 1st Prize – Design contract, value of 1.577.345 RON (Romanian Leu) (about 343,535 EUR), no VAT included; 2nd Prize 60,000 RON (about 13,070 EUR), 3rd Prize 30,000 RON (about 6,535 EUR), Honorable Mention 15,000 RON (about 3,265 EUR)
The meaning of this contest derives from the need to reconsider the presence of River Someşul Mic in the future development of the city as a result of insufficient recognition of the present uses of the river’s potential for the city, its inhabitants and visitors. The River Someşul Mic covers a route of about 15 km through the built-up area of Cluj-Napoca, crossing the city from West to East. It is one of the defining landscaping elements for the profile and personality of the city, next to the “Cetățuia” Hill (with its extension through Lombului Hill) and the assembly of the Parks („Rozelor”, „Iuliu Hațieganu”, “Simion Bărnuțiu”, „Feroviarilor”, „Armatura”). The historical city, both the Roman and the medieval one, developed in close proximity to the river, the fortified enclosure being located on a promontory on the northern shore of the river Someşul Mic. Over time, the urban development led to the gradual incorporation of the river in the city network, thus establishing different relationships between the river and its banks and the city with its structure and its life.
Throughout its entire history, Someşul Mic was a river of unpredictable behavior, with sudden changes and dramatic flow. By the end of the nineteenth century, the major stream bed of the river was very wide and swampy, and the minor riverbed always found another route within its limits. As a result, the people of Cluj did not see a friend in the river, but rather an uncomfortable neighbor, this is the reason which made the city’s approach of the river to be cautious and hesitant.
This river is not used at present at its real potential and almost none of the benefits that a watercourse brings to the life of a modern city is valued. On wide parts of its course this state is known among the locals through the phrase: “the city turned its back on the river”.
Therefore, in recent years, the “the city facing the river” has become one of the main concerns of the Municipality and the entire community of Cluj. The River has become the favorite subject of many studies, analyzes, specific projects and temporary interventions made both by the specialists in urban development (planners, architects, landscape architects, hydrologists, biologists, sociologists, anthropologists, geologists, surveyors etc.) and students, cultural workers and citizens of the city. All these have resulted in different inventive approaches to the relationship of the city with the river and aimed at bringing into focus the current Someş and its transformation into the Someş of the future.
The specific complexity implied by the relationship of the city with the “Someş of the future” in a long-term perspective determined the initiation to organize this competition aimed at valuing the benefits that this river brings to the city by conceptual reshaping of the waterfront, highlighting its landscape and ecological value and, at the same time, identifying the vocation of this natural city axis to transform the public spaces which it crosses by developing specific functions in the neighborhood of the watercourse.
Following this contest, the promoter will contract the development of PIDU Someşul Mic and complete design services for the two areas with the winning team.
The competition encourages creativity, whilst supporting urban, landscape, architectural, hydrological and sociological research for the purpose of an integrated urban remodeling concept, which would bring novelty, attractiveness and appropriate functionality, sensitivity and respect for the existing items, both landscape and historical, to the relationship of the city with the river.
For the general study area, the competitors are asked to meet the need of the promoter to have a complex, multidisciplinary instrument, which will be the basis for the future urban development (zonal and detail).